by Joe March
May 28, 2005
We had a GREAT time on the Imagination! We are a family of six and this was our 2nd Carnival Cruise (Spirit - Feb '03). We had read the reviews about the Imagination being quite older and smaller than the Spirit. True, but no problem whatsoever. Everything was clean and we never felt "crowded" in any way. We felt the lido deck pool area was actually better than on the Spirit. Our cabins were on the main deck aft and were pretty much what we remembered from the Spirit. Enough room for comfort, and clean. Cruise director Jeff Bronson did a good job. There was a large contingent of what I believed were Southern Baptist church groups onboard and they were a surprisingly fun and well behaved group. Camp Carnival was great once again. All of the kids had a great time. We didn't see the "Shout" show (which is supposed to be the best) because they cancelled it on the night we were going to attend because of the ships rocking. The waters were overall very calm except for about a three hour window that night. They did make it up the next evening but we didn't catch it then. We saw 2 comedians and they were both good. Very funny. Our itinerary was 5 nights to Grand Cayman and Ocho Rios. We skipped the overpriced shore excursions and got island tours from local cabbies. No problem in either case as we got to see all the islands highlights for a great discount. In Jamaica the street vendors are pushy but that kind of stuff doesn't bother us much. Just give a firm "no thank you" and move on. Grand Cayman is still showing major effects from Hurricane Ivan but it's still very pretty. The food onboard was plentiful and tasty. Carnival does an amazing job considering the massive project preparing all those meals entails.
All in all, on a scale of one to ten I'd give this cruise an 8.